Knowledge Highlights 2 November 2022

The Workplace Safety and Health (Approved Codes of Practice) Notification 2022 (“Notification”) has been published in the Government Gazette. Pursuant to the Notification, the Workplace Safety and Health Council (“WSH Council”) notifies that the WSH Council has approved the Codes of Practice listed in the Notification with effect from 31 October 2022.

Among the Codes of Practice listed in the Notification is the Code of Practice on Chief Executives’ and Board of Directors’ Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) Duties (“COP”).

By way of background, the WSH Council announced the launch of the COP on 19 September 2022 and issued a set of FAQs along with the COP. It was stated that the COP would be gazetted as an Approved Code of Practice (“ACOP”) by October 2022. The FAQs explained that ACOPs provide guidance for companies to attain the outcome stated in a regulation. In the event of a contravention of the Workplace Safety and Health Act 2006 (“WSH Act”), compliance with the recommendations in an ACOP may be a mitigating factor for the court’s consideration.

The COP aims to provide clarity on and strengthen ownership of the WSH roles and duties of chief executives and the board of directors of companies (together, “Company Directors”). The COP outlines the desired outcomes in organisational systems and culture that Company Directors should seek to achieve in order to comply with the WSH Act and lists examples of reasonably practicable steps that Company Directors can take in this regard. For more information about the COP, please read our article titled “Code of practice on chief executives’ and board of directors’ WSH duties launched, to be gazetted by October 2022”.

Reference materials

The following materials are available on the WSH Council website www.tal.sg/wshc:

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